Sunday, December 2, 2012

God HATES Sinners

God HATES Sinners


For You are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness, nor shall evil dwell with You. The boastful shall not stand in Your sight; You hate all workers of iniquity.” – Psalms 5:4-5

First, let me explain.  My intent in writing this was not to just show a bad side of God’s characters, for there is no bad side.  He is God, He is perfect, and His hatred is perfect as well.  My intent was to explore several misquotes from the Bible.  This one was a surprise to me that has changed how I see God, and allows me to see Him more clearly for who He truly is.  After studying the scriptures, I believe the clich├ęs that “God isn’t mad at you - He’s mad about you” and “God loves the sinner and hates the sin” are not Biblical, and dilute who God really is. 
God is a God of full of love and mercy.  The Bible says, “God is Love” (1 John 4:8).  But it also teaches that out of the wrath of His righteous anger at sin He destroyed the entire world with a flood and saved only animals and 8 people aboard Noah’s ark.  It also shows His wrath in throwing down burning brimstone to Sodom and Gomorrah to destroy those two cities and everyone in them.  He sent His people Israel into a land that was promised to them and had them kills those that were living in the cities in rebellion and worshipping idols. Did He hate these people?  Yes, He did.

We are created in the image of God. God gave us the ability to be angry, and yes, to hate, just as He hates.  As much as we can understand that God hates rebellion and sin, we have to also know that God hates the sinner.  In fact, His Holy Word says so.
In Psalms 5:4-5 we read that no evil will dwell with God, and that the proud can’t stand in His sight and it says “YOU HATE ALL WORKERS OF INIQUITY”. Clearly this scripture tells us that God does hate the person who sins.

We read again in Psalms 11:4-7, which says “The Lord is in His holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven; His eyes behold, His eyelids test the sons of men. The Lord tests the righteous, but the wicked and the one who loves violence HIS SOUL HATES.  Upon the wicked He will rain coals; Fire and brimstone and a burning wind shall be the portion of their cup. For the Lord is righteous, He loves righteousness; His countenance beholds the upright”.
Perhaps you feel there’s something missing in the translation.  Maybe the word used in the Hebrew here for hate isn’t exactly as we describe hate. The word used is Strong’s H8130, sane', which is a primitive root word meaning “to hate (personally), enemy, foe, (be) hate(-ful, -r), odious, X utterly”. Without doubt, it means exactly what it says - God HATES the sinner.

Are there examples in the Bible of God hating a specific person? Yes.  Malachi 1:2-4 quotes God as saying,
“I have loved you,” says the Lord. “Yet you say, ‘In what way have You loved us?’ Was not Esau Jacob’s brother?” Says the Lord. “Yet Jacob I have loved; BUT ESAU I HAVE HATED, and laid waste his mountains and his heritage for the jackals of the wilderness.” Even though Edom has said, “We have been impoverished, but we will return and build the desolate places,” Thus says the Lord of hosts: “They may build, but I will throw down; They shall be called the Territory of Wickedness, and the people against whom the Lord will have indignation forever.”  When Esau gave up his birthright for a bowl of stew he was called Edom (Genesis 25:30).  In Genesis 36:8 when Esau leaves Jacob for Mt. Seir, “Esau is Edom”.  It says the Lord will have “indignation forever” toward them.

Esau was hated by God before He was born.  God, knowing the past, present, and future, knew the kind of man Esau would become and his idolatry.  In Genesis 25:23 God tells Esau and Jacob’s mother while she is still pregnant “Two nations are in your womb, two peoples shall be separated from your body; one people shall be stronger than the other, and the older shall serve the younger.” Esau being the older twin would become a slave to the younger Jacob.  Jacob would become Israel, the father of the twelve tribes of Israel, God’s chosen people. 

God’s hate of Esau is reported again in Romans 9:10-13, and says that “And not only this, but when Rebecca also had conceived by one man, even by our father Isaac (for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls), it was said to her, “The older shall serve the younger.” As it is written, “Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated.”

To fully understand why God can be called love and still have hate we have to understand what love is.  Love is not a feeling, but actions.  Hate is also actions.  Without hate in God’s heart, how would it be possible to commit a sinner to eternal hell?  Without committing sinners to hell, how could God be just?  And yet, He does that daily as people die lost and without belief in His son. 

Jude 1:5-7 further relates God’s hate of sinners and says, “But I want to remind you, though you once knew this, that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward DESTROYED THOSE WHO DID NOT BELIEVE. And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day; as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of ETERNAL FIRE.

Love isn’t in what you say. It’s in what you do.  If you were to even daily tell your spouse or parents “I love you” and never showed it in your actions, would it be love? No. And God does love us, and He has shown it in the most powerful way possible. 

Romans 5:8-10 says “But God DEMONSTRATES HIS OWN LOVE TOWARD US, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved FROM WRATH through Him. For if when WE WERE ENEMIES we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.”

God’s love for us was so strong that He took all the hate He had for us due to our sinful condition and put it on Jesus, His son.  God was not blind to the sight of Jesus’ sufferings.  He stood by and allowed Jesus to be beaten, mocked, bruised, and killed because of our sin.  He loved us so strongly that He would allow Jesus to endure death to be able to reconcile us to Him.  He sacrificed Jesus for us.  He shed His blood for us.

God hates sinners, but He doesn’t want anyone to be one (2 Peter 3:9)!  Sinners are those who reject His son as a sacrifice for their sins.  If you choose to not accept the payment of your sin, you choose to remain a sinner. 

We all have one decision to make that will change our lives here on earth and for eternity.  Will you accept Jesus as your pardon from sin and live in the love of God, or will you reject Him and be condemned through God’s hatred of sinners?

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